Last year, as Isenberg (and the rest of the world) began to acclimate to conducting all of our business online, the school held several Dean’s Lunchtime Chats to keep all of its stakeholders – students, alumni, and friends – informed about how it was continuing to provide the innovative, experiential educational experience that students at all levels expect. One unexpected discovery was that the webinar format worked really well as a way to maintain open lines of communication with people near and far. So for 2021, Isenberg has scheduled monthly Lunchtime Chats focused on the five priority areas that Dean Anne Massey has identified as ways to advance the school's reputation and propel it even higher among the top tier of public business school programs.
In January, Massey and Assistant Dean for the Office of Career Success Holly Lawrence spoke with alumni during a Lunchtime Chat focused on the Isenberg priority to Enable Career Success. Really robust career services are an absolute must for every top business school, and Isenberg's fantastic program is unique at UMass Amherst – in fact, it is the only school that offers an independent career office. Because it’s so important, Massey and Lawrence explained during the webinar why the existing Chase Career Center and the Business Communications program have been merged into the new Office of Career Success.
They offered updates on new services the Office is ramping up, including the development of Isenberg Digital Assets (affectionately known as IDAs) that offer career advice and strategies in video format, to be accessible to students at any level – including online students – at any time of day or night. Lawrence talked about how the Office of Career Success is working to expand its support for the entire Isenberg community, including, for the first time, alumni. She and Massey explained that donor support earmarked for the Enabling Career Success priority will help meet those goals, and that alumni can also get involved by recruiting Isenberg students and graduates and sharing their expertise.
Watch the recording of the Lunchtime Chat focused on Enabline Career Success here.
In February, Massey’s Lunchtime Chat focused on Creating Global Citizens and Inclusive Leaders, and featured Alaina Macaulay, executive director of diversity and inclusion, and Melvin Rodriguez, assistant dean of undergraduate programs, as well as two students: Maggie Mulligan and Rachel Panton. The group described many of Isenberg’s existing programs – including study abroad programs as well as the Global Citizens Award program, which supports student efforts in volunteering for local programs such as Not Bread Alone, a community meal program in Amherst.
Macaulay described many of the school’s initiatives in the diversity, equity, and inclusion space, including the Inclusive Leadership Summit, a new course called Diversity in Business, and the student DEI Council, which has been brainstorming new strategies for fostering an inclusive culture at Isenberg. The popular Women of Isenberg Conference, which took place virtually in the fall for the first time, brought together students, alumni, and friends for panels and networking events highlighting challenges and opportunities for professional women.
Watch the recording of the Lunchtime Chat focused on Creating Global Citizens and Inclusive Leaders here.
Be sure to check out all of Isenberg's upcoming events, including three more Lunchtime Chats: